Do you suspect it’s time to schedule an appointment with a periodontist in Kingwood, TX but you’re a bit uncertain?
Today, we will take a peek at all the symptoms that might be pointing towards a diagnosis of periodontal disease. And, we will share with you some information on possible causes of your gum disease along with some of the root causes.
If all of that sounds a tad bit overwhelming, don’t fear. Today, dentists have more tools than ever before to help you reverse the ravages of gum disease than ever before and restore your gums to health.
What Is a Periodontist?
First, for those who might be uncertain, let’s look at the definition of a periodontist. The American Dental Association defines a periodontist as a dentist who specializes in diagnosing and treating the gums, tissues and supporting structures which surround the teeth.
This is a dental specialty requiring an additional three years of advanced training and education upon graduation from dental school.
In addition to treating periodontal diseases, these specialists may also offer cosmetic gum procedures.
You are in good hands!
The First Line of Defense—Your Family Dentist
If you are visiting the dentist every six months as scheduled, your family dentist offers the first line of defense in your battle versus gum disease.
During your exam, you probably feel the dentist poking gently at your gums and rattling numbers off to the hygienist to click into your record. These numbers indicate the health of your periodontal pockets. The number they are calling out is a measurement of your pockets in millimeters.
If they find your pockets range from 1 to 2 millimeters, you’re good to go. This is a bill of good health! However, a reading from 3 to 5 indicates early stages of periodontitis or gingivitis. Your dentist will likely give you a coaching on hygiene and perhaps an antibiotic if there are signs of infection.
Beyond that, the family dentist will send you to a periodontist for treatment before your condition worsens. Choosing a great periodontist is painless—just ask your family dentist for a referral.
What Are the Primary Symptoms of Gum Disease?
If you do not visit your dentist every six months, you will have symptoms that present which indicate the presence of gingivitis, the first step of periodontal disease.
Some of the most common signs of this disease are the following:
- Halitosis (bad breath) despite your best efforts at brushing and flossing
- Extreme tooth sensitivity that wasn’t present in the past
- Gums with a red, angry, or swollen appearance
- Your gums bleed frequently; so much so that flossing has become painful
- The teeth appear larger or longer
- Teeth are loosening up
- A receding gumline
- Toothaches or pain
At this point, it is crucial that you visit your family dentist right away. The family practice will look at your gums and decide whether you are in primary stages of gum disease that can be treated at their office or if you must find a periodontist asap.
Be sure to ask your dentist for a referral as the best periodontists sometimes have a heavy patient load.
Three Common Causes of Gum Disease
Fortunately, gum disease is largely preventable. And, if you catch it in the earliest stages, you can recover under the supervision of a dentist.
Some of the causes of gum disease are listed below—along with tips on preventing or slowing down the progress of your gingivitis.
- Smoking cigarettes—quit right away!
- Dipping snuff or using smokeless tobacco—again, you know the answer—quit!
- Poor oral hygiene—take care brushing and flossing for two minutes, at least twice daily. Follow up with an oral rinse. See your dentist for those important six month visits.
What the Periodontist Can Do for You
Finally, you should know that the periodontist will do everything they can to stop gum disease in its tracks and even minimize the damage. The goal of every dentist is to preserve your natural teeth, when possible.
Your gums play a crital role in holding your teeth in place. Your periodontist will recommend treatments from antibiotics to laser surgery to make that effort to help you keep your teeth.
However, if you wait too long to get help, you may be taking that option off of the table. Should the illness progress until its done untold damage to your gums, it could become too late!
Don’t make that mistake, err on the side of caution and seek a dentist’s advice asap.